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Cinema data is characteristically complex, heterogeneous and interlinked. Rather than relying on simple information retrieval techniques, researchers are increasingly turning to the creative exploration and reapplication of data in order to more fully explore the meaning of newly available and diverse data sets. In this context, the cinema historian becomes the creator of visual texts which can be assessed for both their interpretive insight and their aesthetic qualities. This paper presents four research projects that develop different spatio-temporal visualisation techniques to understand the industrial dynamics of post-war film exhibition and distribution in Australia. The research integrates groundbreaking work by a group of inter-disciplinary investigators into the effectiveness of techniques such as dendritic mapping, Circos, time-series graphs, animation, cartogram mapping, and multivariate visualisation for the study of cinema circuits and operations at a number of scales.